Lincoln's latest evaluations | The Momma Diaries

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Lincoln's latest evaluations

When we had Lincoln's parent teacher conference two months ago, it was requested that he have an OT evaluation.  Jared and I didn't see the harm of an evaluation, so we agreed. 

Two weeks ago, I received a letter in Lincoln's backpack saying we would be meeting on March 21st.  I assumed this would be when the evaluation would be taking place.  The day before the "evaluation" I received an envelope in Lincoln's backpack with the report from his evaluations.  OT and PT.  Apparently the meeting was to go over this report. 

I was a little blindsided, because I thought we were going to be present for this evaluation, and I really didn't even know he was being evaluated for PT as well.  There was obviously a huge miscommunication.

I sat down and read the reports.  The tests that were given to Lincoln were a standardized test.  They are also the same test used on a six year old

Let's start with OT {occupational therapy}:

He was first tested in his grasping skills.  He did not show a hand dominance, which apparently there should be one by his age.  He also uses a palmer gross grasp when drawing.  This basically means he holds it sort of while making a fist, and using his entire arm to draw, rather than just his wrist. 

While I personally don't see too much of a problem with this now, the OT would like to work on it with him so he can work on his technique.

The next test was on his visual-motor integration.  This measures a child's eye-hand coordination.  They gave him a pair of scissors to see how he cut.  I have personally never used scissors with Lincoln, but I know he occasionally uses them in school.  I guess he had a bit difficulty using them the correct way, however, he was able to snip a piece of paper. 

He was capable of imitating horizontal and vertical lines, however, did not copy a circle, square, or cross.  He can draw a circle and a square.  I've seen him do it.  He does however refuse to draw a cross, for whatever reason.  Heck, I've even seen him draw a heart! 

That being said, because it is a "standardized" test, if Lincoln draws a square and it doesn't have the four prominent points to signify a square, or if it's rounded in any way, he doesn't get credit. 

Do I think this is ridiculous?  Honestly.  I do a bit.  He's freaking three years old, and I feel like he's being tested in each and every little thing. 

The OT recommended one hour per week of therapy. Jared and I agreed to 30 minutes per week.  He only goes to school 2.5 hours per day, and three of those days he's pulled out for 30 minutes for speech....which he very much needs.  I really want him to still get the social interaction at school.  He loves school, and I want him to continue to do so.  Also, sometimes those 30 minutes per week will actually be in the classroom, so he won't have to be pulled out. 

Now let's move onto PT {physical therapy}:

I really was thrown by this, because I honestly think he's perfectly fine in this area.  And for the record, I still believe this, even after the evaluation.

Lincoln scored within the average range for his stationary skills.  This primarily means balance. 

For his locomotion skills, they were very concerned with his usage of the stairs.  He would always use the railing while walking up or down. 

Are you asking yourself, "what's wrong with that?" right now?? Because I sure was!

They said nothing is wrong with it, and I will continue to insist he holds on if there's a railing.  Again, it was just "part of the standardized test." Apparently he also did what they called a "bear walk," where he placed his hands on the steps in front of him while going up the stairs.  I've never seen him do this ever, so he was clearly being silly.  Yet because it was "testing," they had to count it against him.

For his ball skills, they said he would fling the ball, rather than throw it, and that he could only throw it 2-3 feet.  Lincoln has been throwing balls ever since he could hold them.  His ball skills are very, very good, and coordinated, for his age.  And I am not just saying that because I'm his mom.  Swear.

We were also told he moves around a lot for someone his age.  Personally, I think he's just an active little boy.  Nothing wrong with that!

It was recommended he receive 30 minutes of PT per week, temporarily.  Jared and I agreed to this, but we're really hoping it's just for a short duration.  I hate having him pulled out of class, other than for his speech, because that's really what he's there for.

We are also going to be passing a notebook back and forth between ourselves and Lincoln's teachers/therapists.  I was really excited about this approach.  Now I will know if something sounds off, or if Lincoln didn't get a good nights sleep, I can keep them informed. 

Part of me feels like because Lincoln has a speech delay, he's being scrutinized in each and every area.  Jared and I are just waiting for them to "diagnose" him with ADHD or something.  If that is even mentioned, my inner Momma bear will be roaring for sure.  I REFUSE to medicate my child for being a kid!

He's three years old.  Can't he just be a kid?  Are all of these evaluations and therapy sessions necessary? 

I know he needs the extra help in speech, and I'm well aware of that.  It's just, I feel like my sweet boy is being picked apart.  I just hope they really have his best interest at heart. 

So for now, we'll see how this goes.  Wait and see. 

Have you ever had an evaluation for your child, and didn't completely agree with it?  What are your thoughts?


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